US, PH to probe death of Filipino paratrooper during Balikatan exercise

Inquirer.net April 09,2016 - 11:02 AM

THE United States said they will investigate with Filipino counterparts the death of an Air Force paratrooper who died in a proficiency parachute jump for the Balikatan exercises in Subic, the US Embassy said yesterday.

“We are working closely with our Filipino counterparts to investigate the incident,” it said in a statement.

The paratrooper who died in the accident during the bilateral exercises between the Philippines and US was identified as Airman Second Class Jover Dumansi of the 719 Special Operations Wing. He drowned after he was dropped into the sea instead of the designated landing zone in Subic Bay.

Captain Celeste Frank Sayson, spokesperson for the Balikatan exercises, said the death of the airman was an “isolated case” and will not affect the ongoing drills.

“This is a freak accident. We cannot control nature. The wind that took him to the sea is beyond our control,” he told reporters yesterday.

Sayson said that Dumansi belonged to the elite unit of the Air Force and he was trained for airborne exercises. He also said that paratroopers are paid 22 percent of their salary because of the risks they deal with.

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TAGS: Air Force, Balikatan, Philippines, Subic Bay, USA

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